By Nicholas Jason Lopez
“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts on television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.
– It’s 2017 and New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s all the rage these days, so we figured why not put them in the same review family? Granted, we can only cover the English commentary shows, but by the looks of 2017, there’s quite a few shows already. Where we last left off, we saw the sudden onset of the Suzuki-gun faction, with a fierce return not seen since the days of Nexus. A moment of silence please for that ill-fated group. For an exclamation point, they laid out IWGP Heavyweight Champion Kazuchika Okada, as the group’s leader, Minoru Suzuki, laid claim that every Title would soon be theirs. How nice. Now, no matter what they say in it, it’ll still be incredibly difficult to understand the video packages per se, but damn, their production skills are sleek AF and a little extra on the side. So flashy and easy to follow. Everything looks damn near epic. Plus, that voiceover guy? Forget about it. We’re hooked. Also liked the onscreen broadcast presentation graphics of all the matches for this show laid out, as it felt quite sports-like. To the first contest – Kushida/Hirai Kawato against El Desperado/Yoshinobu Kanemaru. Obviously, Kushida will stand out off the bat here, but this was a story all about Suzuki-gun’s return momentum and the Chaos representatives with a goal to shut that down immediately. Also oddly enough, Don Callis fits right in with Kevin Kelly on commentary, though he’s got a big chair in Steve Corino’s absence to fill. A lot of attention was paid to Kushida getting in Kanemaru’s face, conveying that it was purely about Championship gold. The heels began aggressively, with Kawato selling like a Champion, undergoing such punishment. They pulled out this cool spot where Kushida German suplexed one opponent while he held the other in a bridge. They certainly established Kawato’s fighting spirit well here. ED’s single-leg half crab was thwarted when he got to the ropes. Close near-falls towards the end on both sides. All you could ask for here. In the end, ED pinned Kawato with a move similar to a spinning blue thunder bomb. Good for an opener and to continue Suzuki-gun’s momentum. Post-match, they attacked the winners outside. Well, damn.
*Courtesy of Wrestle Talk Podcast*
Check out the latest episode from our friends at the Wrestle Talk Podcast With Joe & Rene, which features interviews with “Ballistic” Brent Myers and “Unbreakable” Michael Elgin.
Since his 1997 debut, Myers has competed in many United States wrestling promotions and also has spent time in mixed martial arts. He has trained people in self-defense tactics with Ultimate Fighting Championship Hall Of Famer Dan “The Beast” Severn.
Elgin professionally debuted at age 16 and has competed in an array of well-known promotions including Ring Of Honor, Dynamo Pro Wrestling, Combat Zone Wrestling, IWA Mid-South and Pro Wrestling Guerrilla. Over time, he has held Championships such as New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s NEVER Openweight Six-Man Tag Team Championship, PWG’s World Tag Team Championship and ROH’s World Championship. He also launched his own promotion, Glory Pro Wrestling, this past Feb.
By Nicholas Jason Lopez
Ring Of Honor doesn’t hide that New Japan Pro Wrestling has their fingerprints all over their television shows and as you see here, their Pay-Per-View events.
Their 14th Anniversary Show featured notable NJPW talent like Kazuchika Okada and Hiroshi Tanahashi as a selling point and that’s all fine and good.
It’s just the fact that it might be misleading to build this PPV as “Global Wars” when there were no true stakes. Besides featuring more NJPW guys on an ROH show, there was nothing extraordinary about this.
In fact, the best things to come from this show were just ROH storylines and talent on their own. You’ll see our thoughts on everything and that oh-so-illustrious ending below, but don’t get your hopes high.
By Anthony Zevoteck
If you watched NXT TakeOver: Dallas over Wrestlemania weekend, then you saw one of wrestling’s all-time greatest matches.
Shinsuke Nakamura’s NXT debut against Sami Zayn quickly became regarded as Match of the Year four months in. These two laid everything on the line and gave the fans a spectacle of epic proportions.
“The King of Strong Style” made his pro wrestling debut in August 2002 and everyone knew that someday the world as we knew it would change. Nakamura made his start with New Japan Pro-Wrestling and continued to work for them for the majority of his career.
On his way to gaining multiple championships, he took time off from wrestling to improve his in-ring skills and gained the knowledge he’d need to become one of the world’s biggest stars and even trained with Brock Lesnar to increase his muscle mass.
At age 36, Nakamura made a bold move and left his home country that provided him with global fame to sign with WWE.
By Anthony Zevoteck
WWE can be a “make it or break it” territory for a wrestling career. It has been proven that when things go great, they go very great, to the point that when a superstar leaves the company, it can leave a hole that while Creative fills, fans can’t help but fantasize “what if.”
“What if they had been given full time to blossom?”
“What if they actually got that push?”
Of course, the biggest: “What if they ever come back to WWE?”
Below are five returns we think are possible sometime down the road and of course, fantasized by WWE fans daily.